Monday, February 22, 2016

In what way is Pakatan Harapan different from Pakatan Rakyat? 

Salleh Said Keruak 

One very interesting point to note in the ongoing public debate between DAP and PKR regarding the removal of two PKR representatives from Penang state government-owned GLCs is that the party decides what happens. 

But that is not the most interesting part yet. It gets even more interesting when Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng says that DAP decides what happens as far as Penang is concerned and the other members of Pakatan Harapan have to comply. 

Not too long ago, PKR’s Rafizi Ramli announced that Pakatan Harapan would no longer operate on an agree-to-disagree basis. This was basically because Pakatan Rakyat, which operated on that basis, found it difficult to agree-to-disagree on various matters and that caused the break-up of the coalition. 

So, to avoid Pakatan Harapan suffering the same fate as Pakatan Rakyat, Pakatan Harapan would operate on a consensus basis, said Rafizi. However, when it comes to Penang, DAP does not operate on consensus but based on what DAP wants. 

Basically, Lim Guan Eng now says that DAP decides what happens in Penang and PKR would have to abide to DAP’s decision. Lim Guan Eng reminds Selangor Menteri Besar Azmin Ali that this was exactly what happened with PKR’s decision to remove Khalid Ibrahim as Menteri Besar. 

Lim Guan Eng more or less confirms that the decision to remove Khalid as Menteri Besar was a PKR and not Pakatan Rakyat decision. So it was not based on consensus but based on agree to disagree. And yet DAP and PKR called PAS a traitor for not supporting the move to oust Khalid and replace him with Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, and later with Azmin Ali. 

It appears like Pakatan Harapan still works on the same basis that Pakatan Rakyat did. As much as they try to impress upon us that Pakatan Harapan is different and is better than Pakatan Rakyat, what actually happens on the ground does not give that impression. So there is no guarantee that Pakatan Harapan will not eventually face the same fate as Pakatan Rakyat.

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